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'Full Pink Moon' to be marked with eastern hemisphere eclipse Thursday

By Scott Dance, The Baltimore Sun

3:53 PM EDT, April 24, 2013

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The moon will be full Thursday night, known by most as the "Full Pink Moon." And it will be marked by a partial lunar eclipse in the eastern hemisphere.

For those on the other side of the world, the eclipse could make the moon indeed look somewhat pink. It will pass through the edge of Earth's shadow, but that will occur well before nightfall for the U.S.

The moon reaches its "fullest" point at 3:57 p.m. Clear skies are expected to allow it to shine brightly in the Baltimore area.

Technically, though, this month's is known as the full flower, milk or corn moon, which typically falls in May. That's because the ancient method for moon naming is based on the seasons, and this month's full moon is the second since the vernal equinox, which fell just a few days before the March full moon.

Under that method, June's full moon will be the first after the summer solstice, coming two days later. And there will be three more full moons after that before the autumnal equinox in September, making the September full moon a "blue moon" by the ancient definition.

Nowadays, though, the full moon names are just based on the month in which they fall, according to most sources.